I like to think that I am someone who is very good at reading people. Discerning the jerk-offs from the people who want to engage in young-adult conversation. I would even consider myself an expert on “the art of obtaining introverts as friends. However one thing that annoys me to the core, is my understanding of soul mates.
Fairytales lead you to believe that when you are about your business, lamenting on your past, and perplexed about your present and future, that someone will just fall right in. He or she will just literally mind-fuck the shit out of everything you thought you knew about life and yourself. He or she will have you thinking you were clearly on another stratosphere of life before their arrival and every move they make thereafter is closed captioned in the book of god. I have never believed this because I begrudgingly know my soulmate is someone I have met years ago.
He doesn’t read Thought Catalog, but for the safety of my dignity I will refer to him as Travis. Travis and I have had a love affair that started by my instigation, and haunts me to this day. He was a football player and a track star, and I was a well known, sort of smart, sort of athletic, member of the bourgeoisie of school politics. I knew he was going to be hot when me matured further; I had a keen eye for this amongst freshman. Initially as a challenge to my own abilities, I told my friend that he and I would hook up eventually, because I knew his fate better than I knew my own. Mind you, I am not a bold person, nor am I one to fully disclose my feelings. I hit on him relentlessly with the premise that, my self esteem is low enough, he’ll never go for it, and I can just have fun with the experience. Little did I know that I was laying the groundwork for years of heartbreak.
Somehow, through my incredible understanding of high school “game” I convinced him to go to a coed sleepover, to which the result was us hooking up. I didn’t ever tell him that he was my first “legitimate” kiss, or that I was slowly falling under his spell…but I didn’t need to. He was head over heels for me first. He even proceeded to text me after remarking on how my lips tasted like cherries and it was something he had never experienced. I went into a state of shock and completely dismissed the encounter as something worth a followup. My life is too fucked up for me to bring someone else into the shit-pie. I ignored him, flaked; anything to make him move on.
We played this back and forth “I love you, I hate you” game for many years thereafter. He had girlfriends, I had suitors, but we always found our way back to each other. I even became friends with some of his previous or current girlfriends on my own accord, as sort of a “stick it to the man” response.
We tried to be friends, it failed, and ultimately he was the one to take my virginity. I am not surprised at all, because through all that history, I wouldn’t expect anyone less to be responsible for the sexual awakening that was my step into adulthood. Ironically, at that very moment, that is when the whole dynamic of all things changed.
I depended on him solely for all of my sexual and emotional needs, even though we were not a couple, and were doomed from the start. It wasn’t until I recieved the penultimate step in relationship building that I became over it, and that he realized that I was the one.
After we had sex, I became more outgoing and sociable with other guys and cared less about what I was viewed as and how strangers would perceive me. I became a better person and a person who was able to show their true colors all the time. He, on the other hand, reclused and realized all the mistakes he had been making in the past. He realized that I was more than just a play thing, and that I had a value that no girlfriend or bootycall could satiate.
It wasn’t until our senior year, that this all came to the surface. After the sex, after the “rebounds” and after the senior prom. I reluctantly asked him to sign my yearbook, which was awkward for me, because I assumed he would right a “H.A.G.S” or keep in touch commonplace. Instead, he wrote a page long, almost page and a half rant about how much I meant to him, and hand delivered it to me during class in front of all of my friends. At that moment, I realized that I might have fucked up this whole scenario. I played him countless times in the past, if I didn’t mean a damn thing to him, when in reality, I was the truest romance he had ever met with.
Years have since past, and I have not had sex with him since high school, but the lingering remains. He has ESP for every hookup I have met during college, and manages to hit me up by way of text accordingly. When we spend time together, we acknowledge the people we once were, and the people we have become. We reminisce because he knows I am a sucker for nostalgia. As much as I hate not being able to find someone else…the fact that we never dated, is the allure that drives this romance to its brink. We both never dated each other, because we never wanted to lose the uncertainty and causal binding that led us to be together in the first place. He even refers to me to this day as his “Susan Glen” (youtube it) and I have no thorough response.
Sometimes you have to look at the facts and experiences, and realize that sometimes, true love is fate, sometimes its completely Disney choreographed, and sometimes it is the result of intense restraint to keep things in a state of bliss because indifference is its killer. I want to say, that I have never met a man yet, who has been able to replace the emotional turmoil that I have experienced with this man, and I am not sure that I want to. *Travis is an example of someone who knows me more than any other penis having male on this planet, yet loves me through all my neurosis, even if I tell him I am hooking up or not single. We cheer for each other when we happenstance upon fortuitous relationships, but deep down know we are made for each other. A city, a profession, a wage gap, a country, could probably not keep us from each other, and the brutal truth is that, despite your attempts for something more…knowing you already met your soulmate is the hardest thing to be in denial about.